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Teams presented as Monaco welcomes le Tour

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Tom Boonen is in Monaco hoping to be allowed to start Le Tour.

Tom Boonen is in Monaco hoping to be allowed to start Le Tour. (Image credit: AFP Photo)
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(L-R) Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme, Belgian cycling legend Eddy Merckx, Prince Albert of Monaco and French cycling legend Bernard Hinault in Monaco.

(L-R) Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme, Belgian cycling legend Eddy Merckx, Prince Albert of Monaco and French cycling legend Bernard Hinault in Monaco. (Image credit: AFP)
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Five-time Tour de France champion Eddy Merckx (L) with Prince Albert of Monaco.

Five-time Tour de France champion Eddy Merckx (L) with Prince Albert of Monaco. (Image credit: AFP)
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Denis Menchov (Rabobank), 2009 Giro d'Italia champion, prepares for a training ride in Monaco.

Denis Menchov (Rabobank), 2009 Giro d'Italia champion, prepares for a training ride in Monaco. (Image credit: AFP)
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Silence-Lotto's Greg Van Avermaet and Staf Scheirlinckx (L-R) in their team hotel.

Silence-Lotto's Greg Van Avermaet and Staf Scheirlinckx (L-R) in their team hotel. (Image credit: AFP)
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Tom Boonen, Belgian national champion, rides with his Quick Step teammates. Boonen awaits confirmation of whether he'll be permitted to start the Tour on Saturday.

Tom Boonen, Belgian national champion, rides with his Quick Step teammates. Boonen awaits confirmation of whether he'll be permitted to start the Tour on Saturday. (Image credit: AFP)
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Oscar Freire (Rabobank) is ready to defend his Tour de France green jersey.

Oscar Freire (Rabobank) is ready to defend his Tour de France green jersey. (Image credit: AFP)
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Silence-Lotto's Sebastian Lang (L) speaks to teammate Philippe Gilbert in the team's hotel lobby. Gilbert resides in Monaco but is not part of Silence-Lotto's Tour de France squad.

Silence-Lotto's Sebastian Lang (L) speaks to teammate Philippe Gilbert in the team's hotel lobby. Gilbert resides in Monaco but is not part of Silence-Lotto's Tour de France squad. (Image credit: AFP)
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Tom Boonen, the new Belgian national champion, and Quick Step teammate Allan Davis in Monaco.

Tom Boonen, the new Belgian national champion, and Quick Step teammate Allan Davis in Monaco. (Image credit: AFP)
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Silence-Lotto's Cadel Evans, Matthew Lloyd, Staf Scheirlinckx and Mickael Delage (L-R) are ready to ride.

Silence-Lotto's Cadel Evans, Matthew Lloyd, Staf Scheirlinckx and Mickael Delage (L-R) are ready to ride. (Image credit: AFP)
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Quick Step teammates Jerome Pineau (L) and Allan Davis get ready to ride.

Quick Step teammates Jerome Pineau (L) and Allan Davis get ready to ride. (Image credit: AFP)
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Lampre-NGC team members at their hotel in Monaco.

Lampre-NGC team members at their hotel in Monaco. (Image credit: AFP)
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Belgian national champion Tom Boonen and his Quick Step teammates out on a training ride.

Belgian national champion Tom Boonen and his Quick Step teammates out on a training ride. (Image credit: AFP)
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(Image credit: AFP)
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Monaco is the site of the Tour de France's first stage on July 4.

Monaco is the site of the Tour de France's first stage on July 4. (Image credit: AFP)
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Lance Armstrong in front of his team hotel prior to a training ride.

Lance Armstrong in front of his team hotel prior to a training ride. (Image credit: AFP)
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Lance Armstrong and his Astana teammates ride in Monaco.

Lance Armstrong and his Astana teammates ride in Monaco. (Image credit: AFP)
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Fumiyuki Beppu (Skil-Shimano) signs an autograph.

Fumiyuki Beppu (Skil-Shimano) signs an autograph. (Image credit: AFP)
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2007 Tour de France champion Alberto Contador (Astana) speaks to the press.

2007 Tour de France champion Alberto Contador (Astana) speaks to the press. (Image credit: AFP)
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Astana riders take in Monaco prior to Saturday's Tour de France start.

Astana riders take in Monaco prior to Saturday's Tour de France start. (Image credit: AFP)
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World champion Alessandro Ballan (Lampre-NGC) flexes for the camera.

World champion Alessandro Ballan (Lampre-NGC) flexes for the camera. (Image credit: AFP)
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Christian Vande Velde (Garmin-Slipstream) about to depart on a training ride with his team.

Christian Vande Velde (Garmin-Slipstream) about to depart on a training ride with his team. (Image credit: AFP)
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Australia's Cadel Evans (Silence-Lotto) prior to a team training ride.

Australia's Cadel Evans (Silence-Lotto) prior to a team training ride. (Image credit: AFP)
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Giro d'Italia champion Denis Menchov (Rabobank) prepares for a ride outside his team hotel.

Giro d'Italia champion Denis Menchov (Rabobank) prepares for a ride outside his team hotel. (Image credit: AFP)
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Green jersey contender Oscar Freire (Rabobank) makes an adjustment to his saddle before a training ride.

Green jersey contender Oscar Freire (Rabobank) makes an adjustment to his saddle before a training ride. (Image credit: AFP)
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Team buses are parked along the harbor in Monaco.

Team buses are parked along the harbor in Monaco. (Image credit: AFP)
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An Astana mechanic begins assembly of Lance Armstrong's time trial bike.

An Astana mechanic begins assembly of Lance Armstrong's time trial bike. (Image credit: AFP)
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Frank Schleck and team manager Bjarne Riis take part in a Team Saxo Bank training ride

Frank Schleck and team manager Bjarne Riis take part in a Team Saxo Bank training ride (Image credit: AFP)
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Fabien Cancellara (L) and Andy Schleck lead their Saxo Bank teammates on a ride in Monaco.

Fabien Cancellara (L) and Andy Schleck lead their Saxo Bank teammates on a ride in Monaco. (Image credit: AFP)
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Sylvain Chavanel (Quick Step) at a pre-Tour press conference in Monaco.

Sylvain Chavanel (Quick Step) at a pre-Tour press conference in Monaco. (Image credit: AFP)
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Astana team members on a training ride in Monaco.

Astana team members on a training ride in Monaco. (Image credit: AFP)
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Lance Armstrong takes a spin through Monaco, site of the Tour de France's first stage on July 4.

Lance Armstrong takes a spin through Monaco, site of the Tour de France's first stage on July 4. (Image credit: AFP)
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Frank Schleck (Team Saxo Bank) speaks to the press in Monaco.

Frank Schleck (Team Saxo Bank) speaks to the press in Monaco. (Image credit: AFP)
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Team Saxo Bank at a pre-Tour de France press conference: (L-R) team manager Bjarne Riis, Andy Schleck, Fabien Cancellara and Kurt-Asle Arvensen.

Team Saxo Bank at a pre-Tour de France press conference: (L-R) team manager Bjarne Riis, Andy Schleck, Fabien Cancellara and Kurt-Asle Arvensen. (Image credit: AFP)
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Agritubel's Christophe Moreau is lining up for another Tour.

Agritubel's Christophe Moreau is lining up for another Tour. (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Cadel Evans is sporting some funky colours on his Canyon.

Cadel Evans is sporting some funky colours on his Canyon. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Carlos Sastre in the special edition kit - and doesn't he look every bit the defending champ?

Carlos Sastre in the special edition kit - and doesn't he look every bit the defending champ? (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Monaco makes a spectacular setting for the biggest Tour de France in years.

Monaco makes a spectacular setting for the biggest Tour de France in years. (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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A Saxo Bank trio - (l-r): Andy Schleck, Kurt-Asle Arvesen and Fabian Cancellara.

A Saxo Bank trio - (l-r): Andy Schleck, Kurt-Asle Arvesen and Fabian Cancellara. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alberto Contador - will he be Astana's number one? We'll soon find out.

Alberto Contador - will he be Astana's number one? We'll soon find out. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Christian Prudhomme greets Prince Albert of Monaco on the presentation stage.

Christian Prudhomme greets Prince Albert of Monaco on the presentation stage. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Mark Cavendish looking suitably cool given that he's in Monaco.

Mark Cavendish looking suitably cool given that he's in Monaco. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alessandro Ballan rides on stage at the presentation.

Alessandro Ballan rides on stage at the presentation. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alberto Contador and (l) and Lance Armstrong line up for Astana.

Alberto Contador and (l) and Lance Armstrong line up for Astana. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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A smiling Denis Menchov is acknowledged as Rabobank is presented.

A smiling Denis Menchov is acknowledged as Rabobank is presented. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Hey folks, I'm back... in F.R.A.N.C.E. Lance Armstrong waves to the crowd at the presentation.

Hey folks, I'm back... in F.R.A.N.C.E. Lance Armstrong waves to the crowd at the presentation. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Bernard Hinault, Prince Albert and Eddy Merckx out for a ride in Monaco.

Bernard Hinault, Prince Albert and Eddy Merckx out for a ride in Monaco. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alberto Contador and Lance Armstrong (Astana)

Alberto Contador and Lance Armstrong (Astana) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alberto Contador (Astana)

Alberto Contador (Astana) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Stijn Devolder (Quick Step)

Stijn Devolder (Quick Step) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Fränk Schleck (Saxo Bank)

Fränk Schleck (Saxo Bank) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Seven-time Tour winner Lance Armstrong (Astana)

Seven-time Tour winner Lance Armstrong (Astana) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Team Skil

Team Skil (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Lance Armstrong (Astana)

Lance Armstrong (Astana) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Lance Armstrong (Astana)

Lance Armstrong (Astana) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Italian Champion Filippo Pozzato (Katusha)

Italian Champion Filippo Pozzato (Katusha) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Gadget time!

Gadget time! (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Fabian Wegmann (Milram)

Fabian Wegmann (Milram) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Team Quick Step

Team Quick Step (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alessandro Ballan (Lampre-NGC)

Alessandro Ballan (Lampre-NGC) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The Devil

The Devil (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Prince Albert

Prince Albert (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Italy's team Lampre.

Italy's team Lampre. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Cadel Evans (Silence-Lotto) trains.

Cadel Evans (Silence-Lotto) trains. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Lance Armstrong (Astana) trains on the time trial course in Monaco.

Lance Armstrong (Astana) trains on the time trial course in Monaco. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Liquigas spot something beautiful.

Liquigas spot something beautiful. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Filippo Pozzato (Katusha)

Filippo Pozzato (Katusha) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Lance Armstrong (Astana) trains in Monaco

Lance Armstrong (Astana) trains in Monaco (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Defending Tour de France champion Carlos Sastre (Cervélo TestTeam)

Defending Tour de France champion Carlos Sastre (Cervélo TestTeam) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Team Liquigas

Team Liquigas (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The classification jerseys.

The classification jerseys. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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World time trial Champion Bert Grabsch (Columbia-Highroad)

World time trial Champion Bert Grabsch (Columbia-Highroad) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Bernard Hinault, Prince Albert and Eddy Merckx out for a ride in Monaco.

Bernard Hinault, Prince Albert and Eddy Merckx out for a ride in Monaco. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

The yachts, the high-rise apartments, the beautiful people... It must be Monaco.

The principality played host to the Tour de France teams presentation yesterday and the anticipated colour, glitz and glamour - normally associated with the Formula 1 set - was a part of le Tour. As Lance Armstrong and Alberto stood side-by-side as teammates, speculation continued as to who will be riding for who in this year's race.

The Saxo Bank boys made a happy crew on stage while Carlos Sastre debuted Cervelo's new kit. Likewise the Team Columbia boys, who sported green highlights on their updated uniform, reflecting the signing of mobile telephone manufacturer HTC as a co-sponsor during the week.

With the race start just a day away, expect the show to only get bigger.

 

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